The Embalmer (1966)

Article #902 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 9-3-2003
Posting Date: 1-31-2004
Directed by Dino Tavella
Featuring Maureen Brown, Elmo Caruso, Jean Mart

A murderer in Venice is killing and embalming women for his collection, but the only one who believes in his existence is a journalist.

This movie has some good ideas; the movie takes place in Venice, and the murderer’s lair is in an old monastary in the catacombs of Venice; he leaves through an underwater entrance in scuba gear, and drags the womens’ bodies underwater to his lair, thus leaving no trace. He also is dressed as a monk with a skeleton mask, which allows him on occasion to pose as one of the many corpses of monks lying around the area. However, the pacing on this one is incredibly lethargic, the dubbing is bad, the comic relief duo is more annoying than funny, and the fight choreography towards the end is quite bad. It also has a somewhat downbeat ending that will either impress you (if you’re impressed by that sort of thing) or annoy you (because it was unnecessary). At any rate, I emerged from this one knowing why Dino Tavella’s name is not as well known as Mario Bava’s.

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